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Index fund is a good place to begin. Foolish Four is not a bad first step in stocks. There are other Foolish stock strategies. You can read about them starting in Fool School from the home page at

Long term buy and hold is one of the most cost effective strategies. And if you have funds for investment after your tax deferred investments are fully funded, it is a tax efficient strategy. LTBH works well inside or outside a tax preference account.
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